Pocket doors are space-savers for small storage areas, since they slide open from the inside of the wall instead of swinging back. If you recently installed a pocket door, consider adding a lock for peace of mind to protect your breakable trinkets or vintage wine collection. You should be able to install a pocket door lock with some tools. Here are some tips to install a pocket door lock.

Prepare the Door

For this project, you need:

  • safety glasses
  • work gloves
  • chalk or felt-tip marker
  • measuring tape
  • clear tape
  • chisel
  • hammer
  • utility knife
  • screwdriver
  • small jigsaw
  • drill with 15/16 drill bit
  • pocket door lock kit 

Make a mark for the placement of the lock at a comfortable height. Use the template included in your kit for a placement guide, measure the length and height of the lock, and mark them on the door.

Carve Holes

If there is no template, deduct ¾ of an inch from the length, and ½ of an inch from the height. Secure the template in place with tape, and carve light lines with the utility knife through the template.

Cut along the lines you made with the jigsaw, which should be a notch the shape of a rectangle when you are done. As you make holes, bore them half on one side, and then on the other to keep wood from splitting. 

Insert Lock and Strike Plate

Place the lock in the rectangle on the outside of the door, then fasten it with the screws provided in the kit by turning the screwdriver to the right. If there are wooden screws, insert them through the front hole, fasten them to the front hole of the door with the screwdriver, and repeat on the other side of the door.

Close the door, slide the lock across to the door jamb, and mark the top and bottom of the position it touches for the strike plate. With the door open, center the strike plate between the top and bottom marks inside the door jamb, then mark this position.

Use a sharp chisel and hammer to mortise the plate so it is plumb with the door jamb. Lay the strike plate on the mortise adjusting for fit. Mark the opening, drill a ½ inch deep hole on the mark, then fasten the plate on the jamb with screws.

Try you new lock to check for proper operation. With a new lock, you will now have peace of mind. If you don't trust your skills, you need a keyed lock, or your lock gets stuck, call a locksmith LI Locksmiths Inc.